Last year my husband and I travelled to the west coast of Eyre Peninsula and spent some time visiting some of the small coastal towns before making our way over to Head of the Bight to see the whales. On that trip we stayed in Venus Bay for a few days. This blog post was originally written by my husband, Simon, and posted over on his site OurWorldinReview. I am repurposing it here because we enjoyed our stay and think you would too. Here is his Venus Bay Beachfront Tourist Park review.
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Life as we know it has changed! The coronavirus (COVID-19) has made a huge impact on the way we can now travel. International travel has been placed on hold for the near future (with still no relief in sight!). Never ones to let a small thing like a worldwide pandemic get in the way of our travels, we switched out thinking and decided to use this time as an opportunity to explore our own local areas. We packed our bags, jumped in the car and went off to see what Venus Bay has to offer. Woohoo, it’s road trip time!
Located approximately 660 kilometres from South Australia’s capital city of Adelaide, on the Eyre Peninsula, Venus Bay is a long 7 hours drive away. If you are doing the trip by yourself, think about breaking up the drive over two days. Otherwise, if you would rather do the whole journey then make sure you stop every couple of hours to rejuvenate or take someone else to share driving duties.
Once you arrive in Venus Bay the tranquillity of the place envelops you straight away. With no hustle and bustle, Venus bay is small. With a caravan park/kiosk and general store/petrol station the only shopping businesses. The main attraction is the serenity, closely followed by the beach, the small hike around the bay with the stunning coastal scenery, and the town’s public jetty, popular for fishing.
Where we stayed
There are only a few accommodation options in Venus Bay – after all, it’s a tiny town – and the Venus Bay Beachfront Tourist Park is the most popular. Apart from that, the only other options in town are holiday rentals. We stayed in their comfortable new Starfish studio cabins with a wonderful beachfront view The water is literally just metres from the front door. These new modern cabins have the luxury of a studio apartment with a functional kitchen, queen bed and ensuite bathroom. Elegantly styled and spotlessly clean, the cabin was perfect for our 4 day stay.
Packed with everything you need, the cabins contain a small fridge freezer unit, a combo microwave/grill/convection oven, kettle, television, DVD player and reverse cycle air-conditioning/heating unit. Bore water supplies the cabin’s hot water and rainwater supplies fresh cold water. You will need to be careful when swapping from hot to cold as the different systems need to swap over. So make sure you run the cold tap so the rainwater swaps in before taking that quenching drink.
Starfish Studio Cabins prices start at $103 (July 2021) per night. However, the Venus Bay Beachfront Tourist Park has other various cabin options that are sure to suit your budget. There are also plenty of powered and unpowered sites for caravans, RVs and camping. The tourist park has shower blocks, two camp kitchens, a kiosk, boat hire and a laundry so staying here is quite enjoyable. We were chatting with other visitors who returned regularly or were staying staying weeks or months in their RVs and caravans. During our stay, locals and visitors alike were happy to say hello and have a little chat about what is happening in the world or giving me some well needed fishing tips.
Things to do in Venus Bay
During our stay we did a little driving around the Eyre Peninsula, visiting Elliston and Streaky Bay and doing some coastal sightseeing which I can highly recommend. The views are stunning! I also did a bit of fishing off the local jetty, catching small rock cod and throwing them back. You can catch a multitude of different fish if you are lucky, but the small rock cod liked my bait and just about every cast I was pulling up another fish (before of course throwing them all back in again!).
If you have a boat licence, then I recommend hiring an aluminium boat for three hours (from the Venus Bay Beachfront Tourist Park office) and going into deeper water for those larger, sort after species like King George Whiting. The boat will cost $20 per hour with a minimum of three hours, but all safety equipment and fuel are supplied, plus they will launch and retrieve it for you.
If fishing isn’t to your liking then look at some of the local hikes. The obvious one is the South Head Walking Trail that leaves from the western end of town. It’s a little over 2km long, and allowing an hour would see you walking at a comfortable pace with plenty of time for photos.
Otherwise, there’s plenty of exploring to be done in the surrounding countryside. Look out for some of the impressive rock formations like Murphy’s Haystack, Pildappa Rock or Mt Wudinna.
If, like me, you are unsuccessful in catching your dinner then there are some basic takeaway options available in town. Try the Kiosk or General Store for some fresh cooked fish and chips or a burger. Prices are comparable to other fish and chip outlets and honestly, they were delicious.
Overall, the Venus Bay Beachfront Tourist Park was a nice, comfortable, and affordable place to stay. Venus Bay is an excellent as a base to discover the Eyre Peninsula on some day trips. Don’t forget that some of the best places to travel to are in your backyard.
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Josie Kelsh is South Australian, born and bred. She has lived in the state for almost her whole life, just one short stint away as a teenager with her family. Travelling all over the world has shown her exactly how amazing South Australia is to live and travel in and she uses her passion to show it to you the way a local sees it.